By Tom Reilly, author Crush Price Objections (McGraw-Hill)

“There is no suspense in inevitability.” (Damon Lindelof)

Of course you will hear price objections! I would be shocked if you didn’t. The simple psychology of human nature predicts this buyer reaction. Much of human behavior is automatic. How many times have you mindlessly driven to work? You brush your teeth without thinking. I bet you have visited a favorite restaurant and ordered without looking at the menu. Humans run on autopilot. Buyers are human.

They object to price because they are accustomed to objecting to price. It is a habit, so they do it. This habit has been reinforced every time you lowered your price, so now it is a permanent and predictable response to any price. Buyers expect to object and expect you to lower your price. It is automatic. You are living with their automatic push-back and your automatic relenting. Where is the suspense?

Buyers also shop price because it is an easy decision to make. Those who study the psychology of decision making call this a heuristic—a type of mental shorthand that expedites the decision-making process. What could be simpler than a cheap price? Again, where is the suspense?

Dr. Greg Berns, renowned neuroscientist, has said that the human brain is “fundamentally a lazy piece of meat.” The brain seeks simplicity because it is more energy efficient. Price decisions require little more thought than, “Who is the cheapest?” One more time, where is the suspense?

Just because buyers raise price objections does not mean that you must automatically respond with a price concession. Lowering your price is only one way to respond to price objections. Break the cycle by saying “No” to the request. Then, you and the buyer can begin the more laborious process of making a well-thought decision on variables other than price.

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